September 14, 2009

Nancy Sinatra//Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)

Pony Express Monday Mail
What is Monday Mail?

A few weeks ago, Tonia from The Orchard, wrote in about a brand new Nancy Sinatra rare singles collection called Cherry Smiles. Here’s what she said:

The undisputed mother of female rock, Nancy Sinatra, recently dug into her expansive archives to compile Cherry Smiles – The Rare Singles, the brilliant new digital-only collection of rarities that she recorded between 1970 and 1980. Coinciding with this year’s 60th anniversary of the 45 RPM format, Cherry Smiles includes twelve tracks which were previously only available as 45s, originally issued via Reprise, RCA, and the Private Stock label. Two of the cuts, "There Ain't No Way" and "Southern Lady," have never before been released in any format.

This of course made me think of “Bang Bang,” the Sinatra song used to perfectly in Tarantino’s Kill Bill. A quote from the famed director was included in the email:

“‘Bang, Bang’ is “the music the movie will work to the beat of… That was in my head six years ago when I first came up with ‘Kill Bill’. Nancy’s version is so soulful. She sings it like poetry. It gives you new respect for what a wonderful vocalist she is.” – Quentin Tarantino, in reference to his use of Nancy’s version of Sonny Bono’s “Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)” as the theme song to Kill Bill Volume I

Sinatra, daughter of Ol’ Blue Eyes, is a singer and actress, but remains most famous for her hit, “These Boots Were Made for Walkin.” She is also the subject of the song, “Nancy with the Laughing Face,” which is really an awesome jam itself.

This song was (WEIRDLY) written by Sonny Bono and originally recorded by Cher, at a much faster tempo. Sinatra’s creepy somber version, all wistful vocals undercut by that single tremolo-heavy guitar, turns this song into a haunting masterpiece.

Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down).mp3

I was five and he was six
We rode on horses made of sticks
He wore black and I wore white
He would always win the fight

Bang bang, he shot me down
Bang bang, I hit the ground
Bang bang, that awful sound
Bang bang, my baby shot me down.

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